By Lisa Anne Ong (Grade 10 – Luna)
“To be honest, giving up is never an option. During the hard times when I feel like I should give up, I choose to give myself a break. When I’m tired, I sleep. When I’m sad, I talk to my friends and family. When I’m angry, I take a moment to calm down and reevaluate. Most of all, I pray, and ask God for guidance and peace of mind.” These are the inspirational set of words spoken by Pauline Sharry Tiu.
Pauline was the ISA Student Council President of 2015-2016. She is one of the most genuine leaders I look up to and listen to, and I had recently acquired the opportunity to interview her. To date, she is a journalist, student leader, news reporter, and champion of many awards.
Despite the increasing battles, she still is an outstanding character who continues to uphold her virtues and encourage the rest of us who meet her. Pauline defines a leader as the voice of the people and a guiding light, as one who needs to stay grounded on the most integral and humane aspects of service. She believes a leader must possess three roles: a visionary, a communicator, and an executor who upholds integrity, humility, and compassion. Her first challenge was accepting responsibility initially. As a student leader, this is only the beginning.
She reminds us that even though everything falls apart at the end of the day, we have to remember that every loss is a lesson and a reminder that we can (and have!) to do better the next time around.
“Through proper time management and prioritization, anything is possible. I learned that we have to select the battles worth fighting for and learn to look at the bigger picture. I had to sacrifice some opportunities to accomplish a more significant goal, and I had to learn to cut back on unproductive activities.”
When encountering inevitable challenges, Pauline is never 100% confident in her leadership, even until today. She was not a loud person, and she felt like she was not deserving of such responsibility. However, the guidance and cooperation of the right people and her willingness to learn and improve are what give her confidence, empowering her to overcome her first enemy: self-doubt.
A person she would also attribute this to would be Ma’am Floralie, a teacher who always believed and supported her and her team since the beginning. Pauline had also given tips for those who strive to be alike. She advised us to continuously have a plan, find the right people, and never sell ourselves short.
When things don’t go the way we plan, it’s okay to give ourselves some time to meditate and reflect and to binge-watch our favorite TV show while eating our hearts out. However, we should not forget to finish through, and remind ourselves to go back to our goals and purpose. She crucially pointed that above all words said, we should never lose faith, perseverance, and compassion.